Previously, Sandoval was rescued or re-kidnapped by Winston's men. They grilled him and drove him to the Winston's compound. Lucy visited the Blackwell mansion and then picked up a toned down Ruby to take to her new position as translator for Winston in his dealings with the Chinese. Tenaya and the Bard having discovered the location of the compound were staking it out from a safe distance. The Bard climbed one of the giant pine trees and saw Sandoval arrive and then he saw Lucy and Ruby arrive. They returned to make their report at Harpsters cabin. We pick up the story now as The Bard is telling Tenaya what he saw before making their way back to the cabin.
The Bard slipped down the tree and to the ground as nimbly as a panther. Tenaya waited below for his report.
"It had the shimmering quality of a dream. She emerged into the sunlight and the sun covered its eyes. So spectacular was her beauty that the earth itself sighed at the thought of her upon it." The Bard seemed on edge, but not dangerously so, just ready with all senses on alert.
Tenaya spoke his language by now. She didn't even ask if he was talking about Lucy. She said, "Did she have Ruby with her?"
"Yes, the Nubian goddess suitably disguised stood by her side. It was a sight that even the most worthy foe would shy from. Oh, and that jackass, Sandoval had an escort punking him inside the building. Surprise! What does she win, Don Pardo? A new Humvee… ready for battle for all the discriminating wannabe warriors of Southern California. Surfs up, Alex."
Tenaya laughed even though she wasn't in a laughing mood. The Bard had some great material. She said, "So, they somehow got the Chief out of his predicament. That's not good. Harpster needs to know that. I think we have plenty to report. Great work. Let's head back. I wonder if Junior ready to skip town will be news to Winston." Be safe Lucy, you have back up. You know that.
Tenaya and the Bard made their way back to Harpster's property with the latest news. The Bard observing Dr. Khin's arrival had to be the biggest surprise. Making a move to get Sandoval was not unexpected. Winston didn't like loose ends and Sandoval qualified as that.
Upon hearing the latest, Harpster jumped on the phone. "Damn. This bastard's gonna pay for that. Keep me posted on his condition. Oh, the good doctor has surfaced down here. He may be a bigger player than we thought. I want to know everything about him. Yes… that's right… I need to know now. Our people are already in there. Khin is a wild card. Hadn't figured him for much of a player. Get back to me quick. I want to know if he wears boxers or briefs. All right then."
Diamond jumped up. "I want to know about my baby. Is she safe or what? And don't sing some song about it or flip some rhyme. Please, just tell me straight up."
The Bard stood at attention. "Yes, sir! The lovely Ruby, jewel of the Angeles Forest, is in good hands. The mythical goddess Lucy is by her side, come to life by the power of belief. Present arms!" The Bard pulled up his sleeves and showed Diamond his white as snow arms.
"Holy crap, we are in good hands." Diamond laughed out loud. The Bard rolled up his pant legs for good measure as everyone joined the laughter.
No one exchanged witty remarks or broke into laughter at the Winston compound. Lucy had found out some things and remained in Winston's good graces. Ruby looked nothing like Ruby. But, Winston wouldn't let on if he suspected. He had more on the ball than Junior did. The speed not only made Winston paranoid, it kept his mind spinning like a top. It is hard to argue with a schizophrenic and no different with a speed freak.
Winston did not intend to tell anyone about his new translator, especially Dr. Khin. Of course, he didn't trust him either. He called Lucy and Ruby over.
"I want to be clear on this, so listen up." Lucy and Ruby both nodded their heads and Winston continued, "Your little language skills are top secret. Lucy knows, of course, but no one else. That is my ace in the hole. Khin knows enough to get a message across. You're going to tell me if and when that happens." His pupils looked like black holes with a light blue border. Lucy saw the crazed look in his eyes and recognized it. Crazy is one thing, this is crazy with inhuman shots of adrenaline.
Winston's eyes would dart manically and then suddenly focus intently on something or someone. Ruby felt his gaze burrowing into her. She ignored it. She had experience with speed being a musician. Meth is a favorite among musicians. It keeps them sharp, so they think, and able to put in ridiculous hours of rehearsal and performing.
Lucy cut in to Winston's dazed stare. "What about the mansion? With Junior leaving town, no one is there but Lincoln. Do you want me to keep an eye on things there?"
Winston laughed as though he had been practicing maniacal laughter. "Junior has changed his travel plans. He's going to be my guest." He stopped laughing and narrowed his eyes. "I don't like loose ends, especially ones that talk. Lincoln has the house under control. I need you here. I like someone that is motivated by money. They're more trustworthy… well, as long as you're the one with the biggest wallet". Lucy and Ruby took that as their cue to join in the insane laughter. They were bonding.
Junior didn't make it to his rendezvous at Winston's compound. Tenaya had tipped off the Police Chief. The LAPD beat Winston's men to the punch. They caught him in the driveway as Lincoln began to start his car. Six squad cars converged and took Junior and Lincoln into custody. The waved a search warrant under Junior's nose and asked for the keys to the mansion.
"You have no damn right to enter my house. What am I even in custody for?" Junior had his pasty-white never-worked-a-day-in-his-life tantrum going beautifully. A stranger would be happy to see him in cuffs without having a clue as to why. He paused his whiny diatribe as he saw Lilith pull up. "Lilith! Lilith! Get Q. Tell him what they're doing here. Lilith, dammit! Lilith!"
Lilith looked over at Junior with an expression that could only be described as contained jubilation. She wasn't sure what might be going on, but she was in favor of anything unfortunate that might befall Junior. "I'll get right on it, dear one. Q and Z and mind them P's. I'll get back to you. Nap time now. Toodles. Don't forget to write". She blew Junior a kiss and smiled.
Officer Langilotti lowered his voice as he spoke to Lincoln. "I was instructed to cuff you as though you were part of it. We don't want this fool knowing you're on our side. I'll get these off as soon as Mr. Blackwell is on his way". He backed up and spoke loudly, "Yep, it looks like the butler really did do it. Well, it looks like you'll be able to keep your position in jail. He'll" he gestured towards Junior, "need all the help he can get".
In the middle of their bonding session, two worried men burst into the office. "The cops got him. They hooked him up before they even left the driveway. That butler too. On their way downtown, nothing we could do."
Winston's laughter ceased immediately. "You couldn't take out a few rinky-dink L.A. cops? CHRIST! Well, I gotta call Q. He's about to earn his pay."
I'll just step outside and holler. He's damn near close enough. Lucy made it a point to keep a satisfied smirk off her face.
"They have him in custody. They're searching the house. Okay, perfect." Harpster divided his remarks between the telephone and the people in the room.
Tenaya smiled. Perfect. I love the LAPD. "Winston is next. As soon as the girls bring his big plans to a sudden halt, we scoop him up."
Harpster smiled and hung up his cell phone. "Johnstone's gonna make it. The Kevlar saved him. Thank God. We go way back."
Diamond shifted her weight to her right foot and tapped her left impatiently, "I don't speak all this code. Could somebody PLEASE tell me what's going on now. More importantly, how does this affect my girl?"
The Bard snapped to and saluted Diamond. "Swab the deck, swabbie. Winston's soon a'walkin the plank. KIEL HALL THAT MAN! Tie that man to the yardarm. Winston's in a dingy singin' rub-a-dub dub. It's wrasslin' not wrestling. And I want all my fans to be there!" The Bard flexed his muscles and spoke into an imaginary hand-held mic. "Wicked Winston's goin' down! The tag team CHAMPIONS OF THE WOOOOOOORLD the Amazon Princess, Luctretia McEvil and the Siren of the South, Precious Ruby, the Dancing Queens will emerge victorious and have their hands raised in a token of victory!"
For some reason the Bard tickled the hell out of Diamond. She held back laughter as she deadpanned, "So, they're gonna' be okay. Excellent." She grabbed her own imaginary hand-held mic. "Nurse! Medication time! Drinks are on me."